CHAMPLAIN - In recent years, local schools have decided to offer safer alternatives after prom. This year, Northeastern Clinton Central School is hopping on the bandwagon.
On Oct. 20, school administrators met with parents of students to discuss the option of having an after-prom party. Although the meeting was a success, many more volunteers are needed to help make the party a reality.
"Prom is a big deal and after prom is also a big deal," said NCCS high school principal Stephen E. Gratto. "Students are under a lot of pressure to find something to do. They've got to go to a cool party or they've got to throw a cool party or they've got to drink or they've got to do other high-risk behaviors. We want to make their lives easier and safer."
The prom, which will be held Saturday, May 15, in the White Room at the Rainbow Wedding and Banquet Hall in Altona, is offered to the junior class. The prom will be held from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m., with the after-prom party following at the school at 12:30 a.m.
Currently, a committee has been put together by the school to investigate ideas for the after-prom party, which will be brought forth to the juniors.
"We're going to come up with a bunch of choices and prices then ... we're going to ask [the juniors] what they're interested in," said Gratto.
Some of the ideas that have already surfaced are a tropical luau theme at the school's pool, and playing volleyball on air mattresses.
"We've talked to other schools that have very successful after-prom parties," Gratto explained. "Chazy, Plattsburgh, Beekmantown. They've all given us great advice."
Another idea that came from those schools is to have prize giveaways, to "entice the students to come and stay," said Gratto.
"We're going to try to get as many parents involved and as many students involved in the planning," he added. "We're going to hope it's a success and make it more successful over the years. We're pretty optimistic that if we do it right ... the kids will buy into it."
However, the committee putting together the after-prom party is not charging the junior class, so donations and fundraising are a must, as well as volunteers.
"It's going to take a lot of chaperones and a lot of people to look for donations to get the job done," said Gratto.
The committee will reconvene later this month, and will have a better idea of the amount of money needed to fund the party.
"We think we're trying to do something to help our kids have a good time, but be safe," Gratto said. "Our top priority of all this is that they're safe on prom night and any assistance parents can give us, we'd love to have."
For further information or to volunteer, call the high school at 298-8638.